Stevens & Goldwyn, P.A. Discusses Things to Consider When Hiring a Lawyer for a Community Association

When should a homeowner association consider hiring a real estate attorney? According to Stevens & Goldwyn, a real estate lawyer is an important step for a community association. 

These are a few questions associations should ask their new attorneys:

1. How long has a real estate firm been in business?

2. Are they familiar with the routine and unique issues facing a particular community association?

Similar to the medical industry, legal representation is highly specialized. Nevertheless, community associations typically work with lawyers who are not as experienced as they could be. This can be seen in boards that select family members or friends they "know well" as attorneys to serve as the board's legal representation. However, selecting a qualified real estate attorney based solely on one's network is not usually a great idea. 

Although it is obvious that a board should undertake serious due diligence when selecting something as important as an attorney, here are a few guidelines to make the selection process easier[1]:

  • Secure Recommendations. Management Companies, Community Association Managers and Board Members in neighboring communities are excellent resources. Communities may also consider attending trade shows.
  • Vet Prospects Through Research.  Once a community board has about 3-5 prospects, board members can go to their websites and learn more about them - their offerings and history.
  • Speak With Them - Call the Law Firm/Lawyer and have a conversation. Are they easily reachable? Do they respond quickly to your request for contact? Are they asking you the "right" questions about your community and its challenges? 
  • Meet Them in Person - Do they offer a FREE Face to Face Initial Consult? If so, where will they conduct that consultation? Will they meet you at a place of your choosing? Were they on time for the meeting? Did they provide information about their law firm prior to the meeting?

If you have gone through this process, you can feel confident that you or your legal search committee has taken the necessary steps to choose the right Law Firm. The relationship between a Law Firm and a client is an important one which requires absolute trust and confidence - and the community association must know that the attorney will place the interest of the community above their own. 

About: Contact the experienced homeowners association attorneys at Stevens & Goldwyn for a free consultation. Stevens & Goldwyn specializes in community association law, real estate litigation, as well as civil and commercial litigation in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Citations: [1] Katzman Esq., Leigh "Things to Consider When Hiring a lawyer for Your Community Association.", Florida Association News Blog. 16, December 2015.

Source: Stevens & Goldwyn, P.A.

Categories: Legal Services

Tags: community associations, home owners' associations, residential law

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